If you regularly shop at any given retailer, it pays to brush up on their price matching policy. Knowing how to negotiate for a lower price is a valuable incentive, but money isn’t the only thing you’ll save — long shopping trips with multiple stops consume a lot of precious time and energy.
Stacking coupons alone will get you pretty far, but you can rack up some major discounts when you know exactly which items qualify for a price match and how to request one.
Many major retailers offer competitor price matching and price adjustments, but they don’t always advertise their pricing policies beyond a vague “Best Price Guarantee” (or another similar phrase). On top of that, combing through each store’s list of exclusions can be laborious.
If you don’t have time to sift through all that fine print, keep reading: We’ve rounded up everything you need to know about major retailers who offer price matching.
What is Price Matching?
The concept of price matching is fairly straightforward — if you want to buy something from your preferred retailer and know that another store sells the same item for a lower price, the first retailer could price match its competitor by honoring its lower price. In some cases, retailers with separate in-store and online pricing may even match their own prices upon request.
Stores that offer price matching might use different language to describe their policies, but it’s all the same strategy — matching (and sometimes even beating) lower prices from competitors is a tried-and-true approach to maintaining customer loyalty.
When everyone is advertising the “best” and “lowest” prices, consumers tend to lose interest in retailers who don’t deliver on that promise.
Price Matching Tips
At the end of the day, store associates, cashiers and customer service representatives can honor or refuse your price match request at their own discretion.
There are no foolproof price matching hacks that work for every retailer, but you’ll get pretty far by following these best practices:
- Bring current, verifiable proof of the lower price. Some stores have stricter guidelines than others, but you probably won’t get a price adjustment without proof. Printed ads and (working) product page links are usually a safe bet, but you might get away with a photo or screenshot of the lower price.
- You can only price match identical, in-stock items. Unless otherwise noted, stores that offer price matching will only honor competitor prices on an identical (brand, size, model, color, SKU, weight, etc.) product that is available for purchase — sold-out items seldom qualify.
- Watch out for excluded categories and retailers. The exact terms vary from store to store, but most retailers will not match Black Friday prices, clearance prices, doorbuster deals, pricing errors and items sold by wholesale clubs or third-party marketplaces.
Price Matching vs. Price Adjustment
It’s easy to confuse a price match with a price adjustment, but these terms describe slightly different cost-cutting methods. While some retailers combine the two into a singular “pricing policy,” you can save more effectively when you know the difference.
You might ask for a price match when:
- Amazon offers an amazing AirPods sale, but you live near a Target and don’t feel like waiting for shipping.
- Your local Walmart sells Horizon Forbidden West at full price, but it costs $10 less on Walmart.com.
Competitor pricing doesn’t factor into price adjustment, which makes more sense when:
- You splurged on a regular-price pack of acrylic paint at Michaels on Friday, just for the entire paint aisle to receive a 40% off markdown on Sunday.
- You forgot to apply your Kohl’s coupon during checkout, but you kept your receipt and the offer is still valid.
The key difference is timing. You can ask for a price match before or after checking out, while price adjustments are always handled after you’ve made your purchase.
Major Retailers Who Offer Price Matching
The Walmart price match policy is fairly strict for in-store purchases. To account for price variations in-store and online, brick-and-mortar Walmart stores will only match Walmart.com prices on identical, in-stock products.
Shop online if you want to claim a lower competitor price. Walmart.com will match online prices from the following competitor sites:
Academy.com, Amazon.com, Autozone.com, Babiesrus.com, Basspro.com, Bedbathandbeyond.com, Bestbuy.com, Cabelas.com, Chewy.com, Dickssportinggoods.com, Dollargeneral.com, Familydollar.com, Homedepot.com, Jcpenney.com, Kmart.com, Kohls.com, Lowes.com, Michaels.com, Newegg.com, Officedepot.com, Oreillyauto.com, Pepboys.com, Petco.com, Petsmart.com, Sears.com, Staples.com, Target.com, Walgreens.com
If you’re shopping in-store, you can ask for a price match at the register during checkout. Walmart’s Customer Care team handles online price match requests.
Walmart Price Matching Tips:
- Walmart does not offer price adjustments — you can only request a price match before making a purchase.
- If you’re shopping on Walmart.com, know that Walmart will not price match third-party Walmart Marketplace retailers.
- You can request one price match, per customer, per day.
You can stack some serious savings with the Target price match guarantee — as long as you bring valid proof of the lower price, Target will price match eligible items sold at Target.com, a brick-and-mortar competitor within a 25-mile radius of your local Target or any of these approved competitors. Target does not match in-store prices from other Target stores.
If you spot a better price after you’ve checked out, you can ask for a price match or price adjustment during checkout, at the Guest Services desk or by contacting Target customer service.
Target Price Matching Tips:
- Target will match a competitor’s lower price up to 14 days after your original purchase.
- While Target has the “right to limit quantities” on price match requests, there’s no “single item” clause — you can ask for a lower price on several of the same item (within reason).
- You can stack competitor coupons onto a price match, but Target store coupons are excluded.
According to the Staples Price Match Guarantee, the office supply retailer matches prices from other stores, Staples.com and any retailer who operates a website and a brick-and-mortar location. Amazon is technically included, but Staples will only price match items sold and shipped directly by Amazon.
If you spot a better price before making a purchase, Staples will knock an extra 10% off the lower matched price as long as the item is identical and still in stock at the competing retailer. Visit the customer service desk at your local Staples to ask for a price match — just remember to bring proof of the lower price.
There is one drawback — Staples doesn’t price match Staples.com orders, so you can only request a price match in-store.
Staples Price Matching Tips:
- If you find a better price after your Staples purchase, you have 14 days to request a price adjustment.
- Under certain circumstances, Staples will prorate dollars-off coupons and rebate offers from competitors.
- Printing, tech support and other custom services are excluded from the Staples price match policy.
You can take advantage of the PetSmart Price Match Guarantee in-store and online, but you can’t mix and match — PetSmart retail stores will only price match in-store prices, Petsmart.com will only price match online prices.
Aside from Amazon and eBay, most competitors are fair game as long as the other retailer offers the exact same item and it is currently in stock. If you would like to request a price match from PetSmart in-store, show the store associate a verifiable ad, link or photo displaying the lower price. For online orders, you can call PetSmart customer service at 1-888-839-9639.
PetSmart Price Matching Tips:
- PetSmart only offers price matching at the time of purchase, so you can’t request a price adjustment after you’ve checked out.
- You can’t price match pets or pet care services.
According to the Low Price Guarantee, Home Depot will price match identical, in-stock items from “any other retailer.” That said, the fine print excludes pricing from membership-based wholesalers, third-party marketplaces (including Amazon resellers) and discount sites. You can ask an associate for a price match during checkout; printed ads, photos and printouts are all valid forms of proof.
If you’re shopping online at HomeDepot.com, Home Depot will match the lower competitor price and the cost of shipping. The item must be in stock and available to ship to your location.
Home Depot Price Matching Tips:
- Home Depot only provides price matching at the time of purchase. There’s no policy against price adjustments, so it’s still worth asking.
- Competitor offers on custom and special order products are excluded from Home Depot’s Low Price Guarantee.
The Lowe’s Price Promise honors lower prices from “qualified retailers” on a “reasonable quantity” of identical, in-stock items. Of course, open-ended language means conditions — the Price Promise includes shipping and delivery costs for online orders, but Lowes.com will only match a select few online retailers:
Amazon.com, Wayfair.com, Walmart.com, Target.com, HomeDepot.com, BestBuy.com, Macys.com, AceHardware.com, BedBathandBeyond.com, TractorSupply.com, JCPenney.com
Price matching in-store is pretty straightforward — bring a local competitor ad, printout, link or photo displaying the current lower price and a Lowe’s associate will complete the price match upon validation. The policy is unclear about what “local” means, but it excludes other Lowe’s stores and membership-based retail wholesalers.
Lowe’s Price Matching Tips:
- Lowe’s has a longer price match window than most retailers, you have up to 90 days after the original purchase.
- If you’re using Lowes.com to request a price match in-store, make sure to set that store as your location — Lowe’s online prices are tied to which brick-and-mortar location you’ve selected.
According to the Best Buy Price Match Guarantee, Best Buy will price match in-store and online pricing from local competitors (within a 25-mile radius of your shipping address) and a handful of first-party online retailers:
Amazon.com, Crutchfield.com, Dell.com, HP.com, TigerDirect.com
Best Buy will price match store, online and app prices interchangeably — if any of these three prices drop after your initial purchase, you can request a price adjustment during the return and exchange period. You can request a price match during checkout if you’re shopping in-store, or you can speak with a Best Buy customer service representative via live chat.
To qualify for price matching, the lower-priced item must be new (not refurbished or open-box), in stock and identical to Best Buy’s version. “Identical” is crucial, as Best Buy is notorious for using proprietary model numbers on expensive merchandise.
Best Buy Price Matching Tips:
- Best Buy will honor price adjustments during the return and exchange period, which varies across product categories — check the date on your receipt.
- Exclusive Best Buy Education and Best Buy Business pricing does not qualify for a price match.
- You can only request one price match at the time of purchase, per identical item, per customer.
Kohl’s Price Match policy is fairly standard, but it’s worth reading this long list of exclusions ahead of time — many brands are excluded and not all departments and categories follow the same policy.
Online and store price matching follow the same basic rules — Kohl’s will price match most major retailers with physical store locations (except for wholesale clubs), online retailers with physical stores and Kohls.com. Kohl’s will not match Amazon prices or online-only retailers.
If you’re shopping in-store, you’ll need to show the Kohl’s cashier a printed ad showing the competitor’s lower price to request a price match. You’ll have to contact Kohl’s customer service to request a price match online.
Kohl’s Price Matching Tips:
- Kohl’s honors price match requests and price adjustments within 14 days after purchase.
- You can’t apply coupons to price-matched products, but you can earn and redeem Kohl’s Cash and Kohl’s Rewards on them.
- If an item is excluded from Kohl’s price matching policy, the product page will usually let you know.
Compared to most retailers, the JCPenney price match guarantee is incredibly lenient — there are no blackout dates (which means you can price match Black Friday prices) and there aren’t many competitors JCPenney won’t price match. As long as the item is identical and in stock in both locations, your chance of locking down a lower price is pretty good.
JCPenney will not price match its stores located on military bases, third-party marketplace sellers (including those on Amazon) and members-only wholesale club deals.
If you’re shopping in-store, you can initiate the price match process by showing a printed competitor ad to the JCPenney associate. For online price match requests, you can call JCPenney customer service at 1-800-322-1189.
JCPenney Price Matching Tips:
- You can request a price match up to 14 days after your original JCPenney purchase.
- Unlike most stores, JCPenney will price-match wholesale clubs like Costco and Sam’s Club — as long as the deal is available to everyone, no club membership required.
- Bundle offers, clearance/closeout items and services are not eligible for price matching.
The Michaels Price Guarantee is fairly generous — Michaels discounts the adjusted price by an extra 10%. The craft supply mainstay will match prices from any brick-and-mortar competitor and the following online retailers:
Acmoore.com, Amazon.com, Athome.com, Babiesrus.com, Benfranklinonline.com, Cricut.com, CVS.com, Dollargeneral.com, Familydollar.com, Hobbylobby.com, Homedepot.com, Joann.com, Kmart.com, Kohls.com, Lowes.com, Officedepot.com, Partycity.com, Riteaid.com, Staples.com, Target.com, Toysrus.com, Walmart.com, Walgreens.com
You can ask for an in-store price match during checkout — just show the Michaels associate a current and verifiable ad, printout or photo with the lower price. To request an online price match, contact Michaels customer service at 1-800-642-4235. Qualifying price match products must be identical and currently available for purchase at both stores.
Michaels Price Matching Tips:
- Once you’ve checked out, you have one week to request a price match or price adjustment.
- If a price match request relies on a competitor coupon, Michaels will not honor it.
- Michaels will not price match classes, special buys or membership-exclusive offers.
Dick’s Sporting Goods
The Dick’s Sporting Goods Best Price Guarantee covers identical, in-stock merchandise from any brick-and-mortar competitor within 25 miles, Dickssportinggoods.com, its sister stores (Golf Galaxy and Field & Stream) and the following retailers:
Amazon (sold and shipped by Amazon), Walmart, Cabela's, Nike,
Kohl's, Academy Sports, Under Armour, adidas, Foot Locker, Macy's, Fanatics, Target, Sportsman Warehouse, Bass Pro Shops, Edwin Watts, Finish Line, Dunham's, Champs, Nordstrom, Hibbett, Scheels, Big 5, PGA Superstores, Eastbay
If you’re shopping in-store, you can request a Dick’s Sporting Goods price match at the register — remember to bring a current ad or link displaying the lower price, the store associate will need to verify the lower price. Online price match requests are handled over the phone, you can reach Dick’s Sporting Goods customer service at 1-877-846-9997.
Dick’s Sporting Goods Price Matching Tips:
- You can request a price match or price adjustment up to 14 days after your original purchase.
- Dick’s Sporting Goods will price match pre-order products and brand-specific coupons and promotions from other retailers.
- Services, trade-in offers, rebates and outlets are not eligible for price matching.